Stanford’s Makenzie Fischer and USC’s Paige Hauschild and Amanda Longan have been selected as the three finalists for the Olympic Club of San Francisco’s Peter J. Cutino Award, which is given to the nation’s best male and female collegiate water polo players. All three also were Cutino finalists in 2018.
Fischer, the 2019 NCAA Tournament MVP and Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Player of the Year, netted a career-high 84 goals in 2019, a conference-best 3.50 goals per game average. The junior scored at least one goal in all 24 of her appearances, while leading the Cardinal to the national championship. She even scored a hat trick in the team’s 9-8 title match win over USC. Fischer would become the sixth Stanford player to earn the Cutino Award, including two-time winners Kiley Neushul (2012, 2015) and Annika Dries (2011, 2014).
Longan, the goal keeper for the national runnerup Trojans, is the defending Cutino Award winner and is looking to become the second USC player to repeat, following Kami Craig (2009 and 2010). The senior nabbed 260 saves in 2019, fourth most in USC season lore, en route to 840 career saves. The first team All-MPSF selection made 10.9 saves per game and allowed just 4.7 goals against.
Hauschild, who also was a Cutino finalist in 2018, notched 49 goals in 2019, including the 100th of her career. The first team All-MPSF honoree was tabbed as MPSF Tournament MVP after netting four goals in the MPSF Championship, including the game winner in sudden death.
Longan and Hauschild being tabbed as finalists together marks the sixth in USC program history the school has had two finalists in the same season: also 2018 (Longan and Hauschild), 2016 (Stephania Haralabidis and Brigitta Games), 2010 (Kami Craig and Tumua Anae), 2009 (Kami Craig and Michelle Stein) and 2006 (Lauren Wenger and Brittany Hayes).
The men’s finalists are: Ben Hallock (Stanford), Johnny Hooper (Cal) and Alex Wolf (UCLA).
The Cutino Award is named in honor of former University of California and Olympic Club coach Peter J. Cutino, who was a 17 time Water Polo Coach of the Year and is a member of the U.S. Water Polo Hall of Fame. The award is voted upon by coaches from across the country.
The 2019 Cutino Award winner will be named on June 1 at The Olympic Club in downtown San Francisco. The ceremony will be livestreamed by USA Water Polo for free at at YouTube.com/USAWP and Facebook.com/USAWP.
Women from four different schools (USC, UCLA, Stanford and Princeton) have received the award in its 20 year history), while the men’s winners have come from six different schools.
All-time Peter J. Cutino Award winners:
1998-99 – Bernice Orwig (USC)
1999-2000 – Sean Kern (UCLA) & Aniko Pelle (USC)
2000-01 – Sean Kern (UCLA) & Coralie Simmons (UCLA)
2001-02 – Tony Azevedo (Stanford) & Brenda Villa (Stanford)
2002-03 – Tony Azevedo (Stanford) & Jackie Frank (Stanford)
2003-04 – Tony Azevedo (Stanford) & Moriah Van Norman (USC)
2004-05 – Tony Azevedo (Stanford) & Natalie Golda (UCLA)
2005-06 – Juraj Zatovic (USC) & Lauren Wenger (USC)
2006-07 – John Mann (California) & Kelly Rulon (UCLA)
2007-08 – Tim Hutten (UC Irvine) & Courtney Mathewson (UCLA)
2008-09 – J.W. Krumpholz (USC) & Kami Craig (USC)
2009-10 – J.W. Krumpholz (USC) & Kami Craig (USC)
2010-11 – Ivan Rackov (California) & Annika Dries (Stanford)
2011-12 – Joel Dennerley (USC) & Kiley Neushel (Stanford)
2012-13 – Balazs Erdelyi (Pacific) & Melissa Seidemann (Stanford)
2013-14 – Balazs Erdelyi (Pacific) & Annika Dries (Stanford)
2014-15 – Kostas Genidounias (USC) & Kiley Neushel (Stanford)
2015-16 – Garrett Danner (UCLA) & Stephania Haralabidis (USC)
2016-17 – McQuin Baron (USC) & Ashleigh Johnson (Princeton)
2017-18 – Luca Cupido (California) & Amanda Longan (USC)